Salesforce To Close Hong Kong Office
HONG KONG – Salesforce, an American tech firm that provides customer relationship management (CRM) software, has confirmed that it will be shuttering its office space in the Chinese territory, reported Techcrunch on Thursday (4 August, SGT).
This comes as the software company has expedited its strategic partnership with Alibaba. In 2019, the Chinese tech giant became the exclusive provider of Salesforce’s software across Greater China.
As a result of its closer ties with Alibaba, Salesforce is “optimizing our business structure to better serve the Greater China Region” and “opening new roles while eliminating some others,” a Salesforce representative told Techcrunch.
While it’s not clear which roles Salesforce plans to slash in greater China, the representative confirmed that the company plans to close its Hong Kong office. Based on LinkedIn profiles, many roles at its Hong Kong branch are in sales and account management.
Moreover, Alibaba will take over Salesforce’s sales in mainland China and Hong Kong, while Taiwan will be overseen by the Chinese tech giant’s Singapore office.
Salesforce’s interest in China lies in catering to multinational businesses operating in China, but it cannot do it alone due to the communist country’s complicated rules.
After China implemented new rules to control data handling across borders in the past few years, global tech giants like Yahoo, Airbnb, and LinkedIn have reduced their presence or exited that market completely.
In 2021, Alibaba and Salesforce jointly launched a product to help brands increase their social commerce presence in China. Notably, social commerce or the use of social networks like WeChat to drive e-commerce sales has become the norm in China.
“Salesforce Social Commerce is intended to be built and hosted in China on Alibaba Cloud, one of the world’s top three cloud providers and the largest in APAC, to help support the level of scalability needed for China’s ever-growing commerce ecosystem and to help customers address local data residency regulations and compliance concerns,” announced Salesforce back then.